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2021 Member Career Enrichment Grant (MCEG) winners

The Iowa Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Awards Committee is excited to highlight the 2021 Member Career Enrichment Grant winners, Erin Bergquist, Kaitlyn Scheuermann, and Vanessa Dukes.

Could you benefit from additional funds to advance your professional practice? The Member

Career Enrichment Grant are funds eligible to Iowa Academy members who are RD/RDN’s or

DTR/NDTR’s to advance their professional practice.

These funds can be used to support items such as CEU activities and events, educational

conferences, certification exams, research, publishing, educational tools, and other


MCEG dollar amount has increased to $600 per applicant. No more than $1800 in grants will be distributed in any given year. An individual can receive a Member Career Enrichment Grant once every five years.


Member Career Enrichment Grant criteria:

● Iowa Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics member

● RD/RDN or DTR/NDTR required


Erin Bergquist, MPH, RD, LD

Erin is a Registered Dietitian who teaches at Iowa State University Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition in a Dietetic Internship (DI) program that will soon transition to a Master of Professional Practice (MPP) program. Her passion for sustainable, resilient and healthy food and water systems education in dietetics has led her to pursue a Ph.D. in Agricultural Education with an emphasis on Education.

She will continue to work in the DI/MPP while pursiuing her Ph.D. part-time. Her research will focus on what methods, activities and curriculum can help dietetic students solve complex problems like food system sustainability, food insecurity, malnutrition and climate change. A major portion of the Agricultural Education and Studies program curriculum focuses on the development of teaching and educational skills, which will be a valuable asset to her role as an educator at ISU.

The Member Career Enrichment Grant will allow Erin to pay for approximately one graduate

credit on her journey to her doctoral degree.


Kaitlyn Scheuermann, MPP-D, RDN, LD

Kaitlyn is a Registered Dietitian at the Waukee Community School District. She has facilitated their Farm to School grant activities, their Farm to School committee, and the addition of three school gardens in the district over the past three years. She has supported the garden efforts and provided district-level support and structure for garden programming. She would like to

provide technical assistance on how to grow the food in the spaces they have available and to assist the leaders and enhance educational opportunities for the students in the district.

The Member Career Enrichment Grant will support the costs of Master Gardener training

through Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. The training will enhance her skills and

knowledge as a dietitian and serve as an investment in continued training and service to her

community as part of the program’s requirements. Kaitlyn also plans to utilize the knowledge

gained to help facilitate community garden efforts in Boone where she lives.


Vanessa Johnson Dukes, RD, LD

Vanessa is a Registered Dietitian who is preparing to take the Gerontological Nutrition Exam. The majority of her career has been working with the elderly population. She enjoys working

with this population and listening to their stories. One of her letters of reference note: “She loves the arena of nutrition, admires elderly and glows when given a chance to bring these two worlds together. Vanessa has a loving and supportive husband who has provided her great encouragement to keep her passion for nutrition alive by reaching into new areas she has yet to explore. I am excited for her and continue to be impressed with her drive.”

The Member Career Enrichment Grant will support Vanessa in obtaining her Board Certified Specialist in Gerontological Nutrition. She then plans to consult in long term care facilities as there will be more elderly people as the USA ages and she will be able to utilize her skills and

make an impact in nutrition for the aging population.


For more information about Iowa Academy awards, scholarships, and grants, please visit:


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